How do you feel about the scooter problem in Nashville?
NASHVILLE (WSMV) - Scooter company Spin, a relative newcomer to the scooter market in Nashville, is responding to Mayor David Briley's threat of banning scooters after injuries and at least one reported death. Spin says the problem is not the scooters themselves, but how many are on Nashville's roads.
"Currently, there are over 4,000 scooters in Nashville -- a number that we believe is too large given the current compliance rate and trends in user behavior," said Spin in a letter to Mayor Briley and Vice Mayor Jim Shulman.
The company, an independent subsidiary of the Ford Motor Company, says they have a "proven track record of working with local governments across the country on safety and compliance issues."
The company refused to sign on to a new recommended list of industry standards earlier this week, stating they believe Nashville needs a different strategy for tackling the scooter problem.
Spin is asking for the number of scooters to be reduced by 50 percent and for there to be an equal distribution of scooters (overall fleet size) amongst the seven companies currently operating in Nashville.
"Halving the current total number of scooters and then allocating equal-sized fleets among all operators would allow all companies that have invested in -- and hired from -- the local community to continue to provide a sustainable mobility mode for the City," said Spin in the letter, "At the same time, creating an equal playing field among all operators would reduce a company’s incentive to aggressively expand its operations-- which we believe has been another cause of the safety and clutter concerns."
The company is also pushing for a stop to the pilot program currently in place and is requesting the city move to a "Request For Proposal (RFP) with a limited number of operators."
"By moving to a competitive solicitation process, the City would also have greater ability to hold the selected companies accountable and responsible for safe operations," said Spin in the letter.
They believe that the new RFP should require a focus on compliance to Metro rules and processes, all companies should have full-time employees on staff, and there should be dynamic fleet expansions at the discretion of Metro government.
"While we support caps that are flexible and can be increased, the City should have full discretion and authority over fleet-size expansions and consider compliance and any other factors instead of solely relying on an operator’s self-reported ride numbers," said Spin in the letter.
READ the full letter from Spin below: